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Scarsdale Congregational Church
One Heathcote Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583

Phone: 914-723-2111
Fax: 914-723-3684
E-Mail: sccoffice@verizon.net

 

pritchardArthur Osborn Pritchard
Senior Minister, 1903-1918
The Scarsdale Congregational Church did not exist as a separate congregation under Arthur Osborn Pritchard's tenure. He was the junior pastor of the Westchester Congregational Church, of which the Scarsdale congregation was a part. Rev. Pritchard conducted the first service in the Little Stone Church on Christmas Day 1904. Chronic asthma necessitated a change in climate, and he accepted a call to the Congregational Church of Pomona, California. His last service in Scarsdale was Children's Day, June 9, 1918. When he left he was described as an “invaluable worker, pastor, teacher and preacher." During his service the church grew from 35 to 180 members and the Sunday School grew from 69 to 145 children.

 

Henry MacPherson Dyckman
Senior Minister, 1918-1923
Henry MacPherson Dyckman was called from the First Congregational Church of Westfield, Massachusetts and began his work in Scarsdale on September 25, 1918. The church was growing and needed bigger facilities, but funds were limited. The congregation chose to build an Assembly Hall that could be used by people from Scarsdale Village as well as by the congregation where there would be a "temporary" space for worship. The Assembly Hall was completed in the fall of 1922 and dedicated on October 29, 1922. Rev. Harry Emerson Fosdick was among those taking part in the dedication. Rev. Dyckman died suddenly on August 26, 1923. During his tenure the church had grown from 180 to 345 members and the Sunday School had grown from 145 to 191. On September 23, 1923, the Assembly Hall was renamed Dyckman Hall.

 

Theodore Merrell Shipherd
Senior Minister, 1924-1929
Theodore Merrell Shipherd came from the Congregational Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and became the pastor in Scarsdale on January 6, 1924. On May 11, 1924, the congregation voted to become an independent church. "The Scarsdale Congregational Church" was formed on October 24, 1924. An Ecclesiastical Council of the Congregational Churches recognized our new church and installed Rev. Shipherd as the pastor and teacher on October 28, 1924. During the period 1924 to 1929, the membership of the church increased from 345 to 439, and the church school enrollment grew from 191 to 399. In 1929, there was a decrease in the membership of the church and in the enrollment in the church school, partially due to the founding of the Community Baptist Church, whom those of Baptist background joined. In January 1929, Rev. Shipherd asked to be relieved of his responsibilities as of July 1, 1929.

 

boyntonEdward Chadbourne Boynton
Senior Minister, 1930-1951
Edward Chadbourne Boynton began his ministry in Scarsdale on January 1, 1930, having previously served the Congregational Church in Rutland, Vermont. He was installed as Minister and Pastor on April 22, 1930. His father, Nehemiah Boynton, delivered the charge to the minister and to the people. The depression placed strains on the finances of the church and on the finances of its members. In 1948, Rev. Boynton advised the church he planned to retire from the ministry at age 65. The new Sanctuary was dedicated on April 1, 1951, with Rev. Boynton preaching the dedication sermon and Howard Stone Anderson, the next Senior Pastor, giving the benediction.

 

 

andersonHoward Stone Anderson
Senior Minister, 1951-1962
Howard Stone Anderson gave the benediction at the service dedicating the Sanctuary on April 1, 1951 and preached his first sermon on April 8, 1951. During the period 1951 through 1955, active membership in the church increased from 586 to 1,180, enrollment in the church school grew from 235 to 562, and attendance at Sunday morning worship grew from 167 to 554. Dr. Anderson finished his ministry in Scarsdale on September 30, 1962, at which time church membership was 1,363 and average worship attendance was 594.

“Rev. Anderson … [was] often referred to as the Bob Hope of the pulpit." (Edmond Cotty, 1999)

“My father was a deacon by this time and after serving at 9:30 a.m. one Sunday he checked the pulpit (probably to see if there was water on hand). He expected to see a script for Dr. Anderson's sermon. No script. Just a tiny piece of paper with a tiny outline. Came the 11:00 a.m. service and sermon time again. But my father heard a completely different sermon. Same tiny piece of paper with the same tiny outline. Different sermon. Dr. Anderson was a natural speaker and enjoyed it to the hilt." (June Chatfield, 1999)

 

postAvery Dennison Post
Senior Minister, 1963-1969
Avery Dennison Post began his ministry in Scarsdale on September 8, 1963. Post resigned in 1969 to become the President of the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ. Later he became the fourth president of our denomination, the UCC.

“Rev. Avery Post was an activist in the areas of racism and peace, and his sermons were often followed by talk-back sessions for people to respond to the issues raised. I found it exciting and stimulating, and was moved by the fact that people could differ on the hard issues of our time and still be a church family." (Lois Seulowitz, 1999)

 

johnsonRoger William Johnson
Senior Minister, 1970-1981
A graduate of Augustana College and North Park Theological Seminary, with a PhD from Harvard University, Roger Johnson was Chaplain and Associate Professor of Philosophy and Religion at Rockford College in Rockford, Illinois prior to his tenure at Scarsdale Congregational Church. Before that, he served 14 years in the parish ministry in churches in Everett and Boston, Massachusetts and Edina, Minnesota. In 1974, Rev. Dr. Johnson was elected President of the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Association of the United Church of Christ. In 1976, he was elected to the New York State Conference Executive Council and appointed to its Personnel Committee. Many events during Dr. Johnson's service shaped the life of our congregation: John Schuder came on as Minister of Music, we returned to a single worship service each Sunday morning, we changed our by-laws to create the General Board, and we purchased a new organ.

“Roger Johnson helped heal the congregation's wounds from the sixties and Vietnam." (Don Daily, 1999)

 

 

aboutus18Phillip Seely Washburn
Senior Minister, 1983-2007
Senior Minister Emeritus

Phillip Washburn was the Senior Minister of the Scarsdale Congregational Church from 1983 to 2007. A graduate of Dickinson College in Pennsylvania and Duke Divinity School in North Carolina, he had served churches in Dumfries, Scotland; Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and Hamden, Connecticut, before coming to Scarsdale. Besides his vigorous involvement in many church music and theater events, Rev. Washburn was active in the UCC Metropolitan Association and was its first dean of UCC clergy in Westchester County. He worked actively with the Scarsdale Clergy Association, often hosting its periodic meetings. Rev. Washburn's special calling was his sermons: all of them thoughtful, challenging, well planned and warmly received. With others in the congregation he wrote several musicals and plays that were performed in the sanctuary. Rev. Washburn retired from his position at the Scarsdale Congregational Church in June 2007. In recognition of his long and distinguished tenure, the congregation conferred on him the title of Senior Minister Emeritus.

 

schuder2011bwcropJohn Frederick Schuder
Minister of Music, 1972-2006
Minister of Music Emeritus

Dr. John F. Schuder served as Minister of Music of the Scarsdale Congregational Church from 1972 to 2006. He received the Bachelor of Music degree from Wittenberg University, spending one and a half years of his undergraduate study at the Kirchenmusikschule in Berlin. He earned the Master of Sacred Music degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York and was awarded the D.M.A. degree from The Juilliard School. Dr. Schuder served also as Director of Music of The Interchurch Center and as organist of Congregation Rodoph Sholom, both in New York City. He was on the organ faculty of the Manhattan School of Music, and was Adjunct Professor of Organ at Columbia University Teacher's College. Upon his retirement in 2006, The Scarsdale Congregational Church conferred upon Dr. Schuder the title Minister of Music Emeritus, in recognition of his long and exceptional service to the congregation.

 

Larry KalajainenLarry R. Kalajainen
Senior Minister, 2009-2013
After the two-year interim ministry of Harry Taylor, from 2007 to 2009, Larry Kalajainen was called to be Senior Minister, assuming that position on July 1, 2009. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, with a Master of Divinity degree from Asbury Theological Seminary, a Master of Theology degree from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. in New Testament studies and Early Christianity from Drew University, in his 37 years in ministry Dr. Kalajainen had previously served at First Parish Church in Brunswick, Maine; the American Church in Paris; and churches in New Jersey and Malaysia. In 2013, Dr. Kalajainen left to become pastor of a Methodist church in New Jersey.